So after 7.5 years of scanlating Kingdom, we’ve decided to bring this chapter of our lives to a close.
Sense Scans is scrambling right now to organise a new translator, editor and typesetting team to pick up where we are leaving off hopefully without any delays to the next chapter (apply at their website at: https://sensescans.com/), and while I regret not giving them more notice, this decision has been in the works for some time.
Turnip Farmers began as a random Skype conversation back in 2013 between gongitraped to me (oshit) that effectively went like this:
ggr: “Hey you fuck, let’s translate this manga”
oshit: “Dude, wtf, I’m bored but not THAT bored. wth”
ggr: “It’s great”
oshit: “The heck is it?”
oshit: “I read like 10 chapters 2 years ago or something”
oshit: “That manga fkn sucks”
ggr: “If you keep reading, it’s amazing”
oshit: “We’re too fkn old for this wtf”
(At the time, I had graduated from university the year before and was floating in between Malaysia and Singapore on work internships. I’m over 30 now, a veritable dinosaur as far as the average age of a scanlator is concerned.)
ggr: “Trust me, you gook. I’ll translate and you can figure shit out”
oshit: “Literally what. the. fuck.“
And so, the very first chapters of Kingdom were released after reading a brief tutorial on how to even use Photoshop out of a capsule hotel in Downtown Singapore.
We’ve come a long way since ripping shitty raws off Japanese p2p networks, and perhaps the scanlation of 600+ chapters of a random Japanese manga by a pair of morons from Sydney, Australia could speak for itself but this is my last post damn it so I’ll type whatever the hell I want.
Part of the reason for us even starting to scanlate Kingdom was gongitraped’s insistence that this manga was genuinely something good and that it was ridiculous that no one had bothered to bring this to the English speaking world when something like 300 chapters were already out in Japan.
I bow down to his wisdom. It’s crazy to me how the Kingdom audience and fanbase has grown over the years to now even having an entire subreddit and discord of users yelling at each other about the most inane shit.
And yet, this is also partially one of the reasons we’re comfortable with leaving now, on this note.
Scanlating is stressful. Scanlating a weekly series even more so. I’ve lost count of the number of arguments we’ve had from the very beginning regarding Japanese vs Chinese names or using suffixes to even recent spats in the last few months about organising time to do all of this even in the middle of a vacation.
At a certain point, you really ask yourself what you’re doing all of this for. I live in the US now, on the other side of the world from gongitraped; “why am I waking up at 4 a.m. to typeset this chapter before going to work?”. And as far as both of us are concerned, there’s really nothing that drives us to do this any more other than the fact that we’ve been doing it for a while and perhaps are halfway decent at it by now.
We’ve accomplished everything we set out to do which was simply to bring attention to a manga that in 2013 was undeservedly unknown in the West. We’ve lit the fire so to speak and hope the community will continue to tend to the flame. Whether it’s Sense Scans that continues to carry the torch or some other group of anonymous pirates or Kingdom actually gets licensed some day, I think I’ll be able to look back on this period of time and be happy that we had a pretty good run at it.
Thank you all for your support over the years. Some of you have been leaving messages in our comments section for aeons and while I rarely reply, know that it was definitely appreciated.
Joining all the rest of you in F5-ing for the next chapter and signing off,
P.S. Some last words and a video from gongitraped:
“Holy fk I spent more years on this than high school” (Grade 7-12 in NSW)